Quantcast
Latest Stories

China names Xi Jinping as new president


Former Chinese President Hu Jintao, left, and newly named President Xi Jinping clap during a plenary session of the National People’s Congress held in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, in China, Thursday, March 14, 2013. China’s new leader capped his rise Thursday by adding the largely ceremonial title of president. AP PHOTO

BEIJING—China’s parliament named Xi Jinping as president Thursday four months after he took charge of the Communist Party with pledges of reform that have raised hopes but so far yielded little change.

Xi later held phone talks with US President Barack Obama, with the leaders discussing cyber-security, North Korea and greater cooperation on economic and security challenges, according to state media.

About 3,000 delegates lined up to cast their votes in the capital’s cavernous Great Hall of the People, dropping red papers into red ballot boxes in front of giant red flags, but the outcome was never in doubt.

Xi received 2,952 votes at the tightly choreographed ceremony, with one against and three abstentions, a 99.86 percent share.

“Now I announce comrade Xi Jinping is selected as president of the People’s Republic of China,” said Liu Yunshan, who chaired the session at the National People’s Congress, a rubber-stamp parliament.

To loud applause, Xi, 59, stood up and bowed to the delegates, before shaking hands with other officials and walking off the stage.

Li Keqiang as premier

Xi’s formal appointment as head of the world’s most populous nation is due to be followed by the naming of Li Keqiang as premier on Friday, marking the final step in the nation’s once-in-a-decade power handover.

Xi’s new role was effectively guaranteed by his position as Communist party leader, the real source of his authority in China, but the title will increase his public and international standing.

And he was soon holding telephone talks with Obama, with the US president calling him within hours to offer his congratulations.

The pair discussed cyber security—after Obama Wednesday said some threats against US firms were “state sponsored”—as well as the threat from North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs.

Washington also announced visits to Beijing for US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew next week followed by Secretary of State John Kerry.

Xi takes office at a time when China is becoming more assertive on the global stage and is taking a harder line on territorial rows with its neighbors, and Xi has vowed to increase its military strength.

Domestically, since taking the top party post in November, Xi has pledged to preserve the ruling party’s grip on power by cracking down on corruption, improving people’s livelihoods and pushing forward economic reforms.

But despite the promises of action on multiple fronts, including pollution, observers say concrete reforms would be complex and will not be swiftly introduced.

Xi last year became head of China’s top military body, the Central Military Commission, unlike his predecessor Hu Jintao, who worked as President for two years before his predecessor Jiang Zemin passed on the Commission chairmanship.

As the son of one of China’s most famous generals, Xi has closer ties to the People’s Liberation Army than Hu did and has strengthened the relationship in recent months with an unusually high number of visits to military bases.

More assertive on territorial disputes

He is seen as one of the architects of China’s recent more assertive stance on territorial disputes with neighboring countries and a supporter of Beijing’s military expansion, telling troops recently that they should be “combat ready.”

“Comrade Xi Jinping pays a great deal of attention to military development, especially in raising the military’s level of battle preparedness,” said Yang Jianhua, a green-uniformed military delegate to the NPC.

Tokyo sent congratulations, and its Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said it had “always kept our door open for dialogue with China,” adding the relationship was “one of the most important international relationships for Japan.”

Officially Xi was elected for a five-year term, but tradition dictates that barring extraordinary events he will hold the position for a decade.

He is a Communist “princeling,” the name given to relations of the first generation of Communist leaders, who grew up immersed in the ruling party’s upper echelons.

But he has threatened to target not only lowly “flies” but also top-ranking “tigers” in a crackdown on corruption, which incenses many Chinese, warning that graft could “kill the party.”

In the months since Xi’s party promotion a parade of lower-level officials has been exposed for graft in efforts that have been lauded in state media as proof of a crackdown.

But an investigation by US news agency Bloomberg found that Xi’s family had amassed hundreds of millions of dollars in assets. There was no accusation of wrongdoing on his part.


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: China , Congress , Politics , Xi Jinping




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
Advertisement

News

  • Holy fire ceremony draws thousands in Jerusalem
  • Tanchanco, former NFA head; 83
  • Pope seeks to bring faith to ‘ends of the Earth’
  • Meteor shower to light up PH skies
  • Positive in UAE, returning Filipino nurse tests negative
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao top Mayweather contender
  • Rain or Shine, Ginebra clash for No. 6 spot
  • Ateneo eyes quarterfinal spot vs Benilde
  • Style contrast marks OneFC ‘Rise of Heroes’
  • ‘Pacquiao a great ambassador for basketball’
  • Lifestyle

  • Noli Yamsuan, Cardinal Sin’s ‘official’ photographer: ‘I could smell the aftershave lotion of the Pope’
  • Simplifying and lightening life
  • Where to go for Easter night-out
  • Joe de Venecia visits the Queen Mother of Cambodia
  • Fashionistas flock to designer’s wedding
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Awarded TV couple brings Jesus’ life to the big screen
  • Business

  • Top-selling insurance agent opens her dream café
  • Connecting and transacting with one another
  • Building wealth for health
  • Why Mandaue Foam buys, rather than rents, space
  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Epiphany
  • Unpaid creditor vs distressed debtor
  • Moving on
  • From culinary desert to paradise
  • Response to China: ‘Usjaphil’
  • Global Nation

  • Asia seeks Obama’s assurance in territorial spats
  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement